November 16, 2008
MC 2010 Section 007
Feature Story-Kasey Coleman
It’s hard to be humble when you can cheer, stunt and tumble.
Cheerleaders are known for their high-flying stunts, sharp motions and peppy personality. It is a
sport that requires physical fitness, flexibility, coordination and hard work. All of which Kasey Coleman, a
Pineville High school student from Pineville, La., feels she has.
With over six years of cheerleading and tumbling experience Coleman is working hard to achieve
her goal of becoming and LSU cheerleader. “As a kid I always dreamed of being an LSU cheerleader. I
had the uniform and everything before I was 5 years old,” said Coleman.
Coleman first realized she wanted to become a cheerleader as a youngster. Her mother was a
local high school basketball team coach which enabled Coleman to cheer with the high school
cheerleaders around 4 years old. As she grew she began to take gymnastics classes and eventually tried
out for the Pineville junior High cheerleading squad.
Bumps and bruises were not all that Coleman came away with from her experiences of junior
high cheerleading. With a national championship her seventh grade year Coleman went on to make
captain the following year.
As her junior high days were coming to an end Coleman had to take a break from cheerleading
for a year and become a booster before being able to try out for the high school squad. “Being a booster
was horrible, but I guess it had to be done to get to where I wanted to go,” Coleman said.
After one “dreadful” year of boosters Coleman was able to make the 2006-2007 Pineville High
School Cheerleading squad. She spent two years practicing and working hard to no avail on the squad
due to a lack of care among her teammates.
After quitting the high school squad to be on an all-star team, Coleman is now a senior and
working to try out for the LSU cheerleading squad. With a 19 on her ACT and no experience with partner
stunting, she has a long road ahead, but she has a loyal support base that believed in her hard work and
Coleman is supported by all of her friends and family, but she says her mother is her biggest fan.
“My mom has always been there for me no matter what I wanted to do and that hasn’t changed at all.
She gives me advice and pushes me to do the best I can in everything I do.”
She is currently taking an ACT preparatory class to raise her ACT and has worked with former
cheerleaders Kenny Deanan and Frederick “Fubu” Bazillion to help with the cheerleading portion. “They
have really helped me out a lot with confidence in my tumbling and motions and heave helped with the
co-ed stunting part too. I don’t think I would’ve been able to get this far without them,” she said.
LSU’s cheerleading tryouts will be held April 25-27. In anxious preparation Coleman has gone to
extreme lengths to prepare herself for the upcoming tryout. She attends regular cheerleading practices
twice a week for 2 hours, gymnastics three times a week and partner stunt practice once a week.
To be eligible for LSU cheerleading a person must be in attendance or have already applied to
the university. He or she must also have a standing back tuck, standing back handspring back tack and a
running layout or full twist. The requirements for the stunting portion are a toss liberty or heel stretch.
Having practiced for months Coleman now feels somewhat confident, at least in her tumbling. “I
have all the tumbling requirements needed and have had them for a while, so I’m not too worried about
The hard part for her is being able to show her personality to the coaches. “I’ve always been shy
so it’s going to be really hard for me to be outgoing, but I know I have to if I want me name and face to
be known,” she said. Nailing the partner stunts is also something she is worried about, considering she
just began practicing co-ed stunting a few months ago.
Not only does Coleman have tryouts to worry about, but she is also about to have to become an
adult in the short few months after high school. Her parents have had money struggles her whole life
which means Coleman has to support herself in college. This is yet another reason why cheerleading
would be helpful to her. “It would give me a $2,000 scholarship. The money would help so much to help
me for things.”
Although she would receive money for cheerleading she would still also have to be able to
manage school, cheerleading and a job to be able to make. She knows she will have to work hard, but
knows she can do it as long as she keeps her head on straight and aimed toward her goals.
Tryout will begin on Friday where the material will be taught. Saturday morning a review will
occur and the first cut will be made. Saturday afternoon will consist of partner stunts and interviews.
After this another cut will be made. Sunday the final cut will be made after the cheerleaders perform
their material with their tumbling and stunts. The final roster will include 16 female cheerleaders and 16
Coleman is an inspiration to so many little girls in achieving their goals. “I am very nervous. I’m
not sure what to expect or what the coaches are expecting from, but I’m going to be sure and give it my
best,” Coleman said.
As long as a person knows what he or she wants he or she can achieve it. It only takes hard work
and dedication and Coleman is doing exactly that to make her dreams become a reality.